Mozilla Confirms End of Firefox OS For Smartphones
Written by Ian Elliot   
Thursday, 04 February 2016

Mozilla has sent an email to its community signalling a change of direction in which it will focus its activities on the Internet of Things which entails ending Firefox OS for smartphones. 

Back in December 2015 we reported that Mozilla had announced in vague terms that it wasn't going to be pushing Firefox OS any more. Today's announcement confirms that Mozilla will end development on Firefox OS for smartphones after the version 2.6 release. 

Changes were also announced for the Firefox Marketplace. As of March 29, 2016, Marketplace will no longer accept submissions for Android, Desktop and TableT and apps that don’t support Firefox OS will be removed. Firefox OS apps will continue to be accepted until some time in 2017.

The move out of the smartphone arena is coupled with a move into a another that requires Mozilla's full panoply of resources. The email states:

We have decided that in order to succeed in the new area of Connected Devices we must focus our energy completely on prototyping the future and exploring how we can make the biggest impact in IoT.

What are these connected devices?

At the moment SmartTV is the only one that Mozilla is talking about publicly but the announcement mentions that:

 Having multiple different product innovations in development will be the approach moving forward, and we’re hoping to open up the formal process to non-staff participation in the first half of the year.

A Raspberry Pi style IoT device was displayed ealier in the year but there is no information on when or if it will be available, cost and other details.

It goes on to state that:

The foxfooding program will continue and will focus on these new product innovations (rather than improving the smartphone experience).

The Foxfooding program, Mozilla's take on "eating its own dogfood", dates back to last July and was created to get people to test Firefox OS by providing them with devices. However, it appears never to have spread beyond Mozilla's own staff. 

So will there be enough impetus behind the Connected Devices program to make it the success that the Firefox Smartphone initially promised. Or will it go the same sad way of being a great idea that just couldn't carve out a big enough niche in an already crowded marketplace.

If you want to back it join the Foxfooding community on Github.

 

 

 

 

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More Information

Firefox OS Connected Devices Announcement

 

Related Articles

Mozilla Gives Up On Firefox OS

The Perils Of Mozilla

 

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Last Updated ( Thursday, 04 February 2016 )